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Golia, Vinny Wind Quartet: Live At The Century City Playhouse (Dark Tree Records)

Dark Tree's Southern California archive series adds this phenomenal session from multi-woodwind player Vinny Golia's Wind Quartet with clarinetist John Carter, trombonist Glenn Ferris, and cornetist Bobby Bradford, recorded fairly early in their careers in 1979 live at Century City Playhouse in LA for two sets of exploratory, dexterous and astounding jazz.
 

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product information:


UPC: 3473351000086

Label: Dark Tree Records
Catalog ID: DT(RS)08
Squidco Product Code: 25213

Format: CD
Condition: New
Released: 2017
Country: France
Packaging: Cardboard Gatefold
Recorded at the Century City Playhouse, Los Angeles, California, on May 13th, 1979, by Bruce Bidlack.


Personnel:

Vinny Golia-woodwinds

John Carter-clarinet

Bobby Bradford-cornet

Glenn Ferris-trombone

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track listing:


1. #2 11:34

2. Views 14:45

3. Chronos I 15:08

4. Chronos II 15:18

5. The Victims (For Steve Biko) 07:12
Related Categories of Interest:


Improvised Music
Jazz
Free Improvisation
West Coast/Pacific US Jazz
Quartet Recordings
Woodwinds
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descriptions, reviews, &c.

"This was one of the earlier albums in the lengthy and impressive career of multi-reedist and composer Vinny Golia. On this album he plays a wide range of instruments including flute, alto flute, piccolo flute, baritone saxophone, clarinet and bass clarinet and he is accompanied by John Carter on clarinet, Bobby Bradford on cornet and Glenn Ferris on trombone. With the lineup solely composed of reeds and brass, the music can produce a wide range of textures and dynamics that draws from classical and world music as well as jazz.

This album was recorded live in May of 1979 in Los Angeles, California. Golia alternates between flute and baritone saxophone on the opening track "#2," and it is the demonstrative difference between these two instruments that provides the push and pull, the friction that drives the performance. The deep and brawny baritone and the light and nimble flute serve as a framework and an instigation for the other instruments to add their contributions. The collective improvisation is very impressive, the musicians fly in tight formation and then separate to make their own individual statements with the brass punching forward and the flute, clarinet and saxophone swooping and soaring over the course of a lengthy improvisation. You get a sense of the enjoyment of exploring the unexpected corners of music on "Views" the first of three lengthy performances, each around fifteen minutes in length.

Golia sticks with the baritone saxophone on this performance and it makes for some very interesting textures with the relatively low toned baritone and trombone providing marked contrast to the cornet and clarinet. Golia has a serious graphic arts background, and he allows the improvisation to develop like a painter, spreading bold swathes of color around the soundscape. Carter and Bradford co-led a famous group and they bring their familiarity and thirst for adventure into this configuration. Moving into the second set of the performance, they take on a massive two-pronged performance, "Chronos, Parts I & II" which demonstrate all of the musicianship that this very impressive band has to offer. Both of these selections are over fifteen minutes in length but the music never seems padded or forced. On part one, Golia juxtaposes the high pitched piccolo flute with the dark and reverberating bass clarinet. Part two sees him moving to alto flute along with bass clarinet, leading the charge through the meat of this recording allowing themes to bubble up and be met with powerful extrapolations by each member of the band. Dedicating the final track "The Victims" to the heroic South African activist Steve Biko, demonstrates a deeply humanist streak from the musicians and their playing.

This album as a whole shows great compassion for the musicians, their creations and their audiences. This was a very enjoyable and challenging recording that deserves wide attention."-Tim Niland, Jazz and Blues Blogspot


Get additional information at Jazz and Blues Blogspot

Artist Biographies:

"As a composer Vinny Golia (born March 1, 1946) fuses the rich heritage of Jazz, contemporary classical and world music into his own unique compositions. Also a bandleader, Golia has presented his music to concert audiences in Europe, Canada, Mexico, Japan, Australia, New Zealand and the United States in ensembles varying dramatically in size and instrumentation. Mr. Golia has won numerous awards as a composer, including grants from The National Endowment of the Arts, The Lila Wallace Commissioning Program, The California Arts Council, Meet the Composer,Clausen Foundation of the Arts, Funds for U.S. Artists and the American Composers Forum. In 1982 he created the on-going 50 piece Vinny Golia Large Ensemble to perform his compositions for chamber orchestra and jazz ensembles.

A multi-woodwind performer, Vinny's recordings have been consistently picked by critics and readers of music journals for their yearly "ten best" lists. In 1990 he was the winner of the Jazz Times TDWR award for Bass Saxophone. In 1998 he ranked 1st in the Cadence Magazine Writers & Readers Poll and has continually placed in the Downbeat Critic's Poll for Baritone & Soprano Saxophone. In 1999 Vinny won the LA Weekly's Award for "Best Jazz Musician". Jazziz Magazine has also named him as one of the 100 people who have influenced the course of Jazz in our Century. In 2006 The Jazz Journalists Association honored him with a Lifetime Achievement Award.

Golia has also contributed original compositions and scores to Ballet and Modern Dance works, video, theatrical productions, and film. As an educator Vinny has lectured on music & painting composition, improvisation, Jazz History, The History of Music in Film, CD & record manufacturing and self-production throughout the United States, Europe, Mexico, New Zealand and Canada. He currently teaches at California Institute of the Arts. In 1998 Golia was appointed Regent's Lecturer at the University of California at San Diego. In 2009 Vinny Golia was appointed the first holder of the Michel Colombier Performer Composer Chair at Cal Arts.

Vinny has been a featured performer with Anthony Braxton, Henry Grimes, John Carter, Bobby Bradford, Joelle Leandre, Leo Smith, Horace Tapscott, John Zorn, Tim Berne, Bertram Turetzky, George Lewis, Barre Phillips, The Rova Saxophone Quartet, Patti Smith, Harry "the Hipster" Gibson, Eugene Chadburne, Kevin Ayers, Peter Kowald, John Bergamo, George Gruntz Concert Jazz Band, Misha Mengelberg, Han Bennick, Lydia Lunch, Harry Sparrney and the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra amongst many others."

-Vinny Golia Website (http://www.vinnygolia.com/bio.html)
2/21/2018

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.

"John Wallace Carter was born in Fort Worth, Texas, on September 24, 1928, and was a childhood friend of Coleman and drummer Charles Moffett. He earned a bachelor's degree in music education from Lincoln University in Jefferson City, Missouri in 1949, and a master's degree from the University of Colorado in 1956. He taught in public schools in both Fort Worth then moved Los Angeles in 1961, where, with Coleman's encouragement he formed a band, the New Art Jazz Ensemble (NAJE), with trumpeter Bobby Bradford in 1964.

Carter conducted orchestral versions of Coleman's work at UCLA in 1965, and he was initially a follower of the saxophonist's "harmolodic" approach to composition and improvisation. On the NAJE's 1969 album Seeking, he demonstrates great facility on alto and tenor saxophones, as well as clarinet.

The NAJE continued as a group until 1974 and released a total of four albums on the Revelation and Flying Dutchman labels. After the NAJE disbanded Carter played clarinet exclusively, and progressively came into his own voice as an improviser and composer.

In the late 1970s, he played in a group called Wind College with flutist James Newton and bassist Red Callender, and was the subject of a documentary, The New Music: Bobby Bradford and John Carter in 1980. He played at clubs and festivals in Europe and the United States, both as a leader and as a sideman, with groups that frequently included Bradford, Newton, and Roberto Miguel Miranda. In the 1980s he led the clarinet quartet Clarinet Summit, with Alvin Batiste and Jimmy Hamilton and with David Murray on bass clarinet. As an improviser, Carter came to share affinities with the work of other free-jazz clarinetists, such as Perry Robinson and Theo Jörgensmann.

In the 1980s, Carter focused increasingly on composition, starting with Dauwhe, an octet he recorded in 1982. The piece would become the first part of Roots and Folklore, and reveals his evolving approach to both instrumentation and creative improvisation. With focused interplay and overlapping of tones and ideas, Carter's clarinet takes an omnipresent position.

Carter and Bradford's musical relationship was not unlike that of Coleman and Cherry in their pianoless quartet. In this setting, Carter and Bradford embrace the composition's pastoral, evocative voices of tribal Africa while the sleekness and idiosyncratic horns swirl like apparitions above the manic, even brooding rhythm. Both experimental, yet familiar, Dauwhe augurs many of the ideas Carter later explored in the remaining volumes of his history: clashing cultures, forces of myth and predation, lust, and unadulterated beauty amid the chaos. Neither free music nor swing, this album shows elements of both, and has layers of ensemble work similar to massive conductions of Butch Morris.

Carter's compositions, intriguing in their varied instrumentation, draw on the folk wisdom of country blues, the sophisticated dances of swing, the figured bass of bebop, and the violent clashes of free jazz, all combined in careful doses. The five parts of Roots and Folklore explore deep feelings about the African diaspora, starting with Dauwhe, named for an African goddess of happines. This is followed by meditations on imprisonment in Castles of Ghana, the middle passage on Dance of the Love Ghosts, chattel slavery on Fields, and the youthful exuberance of Harlem between the World Wars in Shadows on a Wall. The works vary in instrumentation, and are both expressionistic and impressionistic.

Carter employed equal parts roots and folklore in his explorations of African-American historyhis attachments to what came before looks forward in both style and quality of style. Carter's work is articulate and allows for a sinister wilderness to penetrate even his most designed pieces, all of which are a statement about Africans who became African-Americans, and the immense losses in between.

John Carter, recorded the final chapter of Roots in 1989, and died of lung cancer in Los Angeles on March 31, 1991."

-Dark Tree (http://www.darktree-records.com/en/artistes/john-carter)
2/21/2018

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.

"Bobby Lee Bradford (born July 19, 1934) is an American jazz trumpeter, cornetist, bandleader, and composer. He is noted for his work with Ornette Coleman. In October 2009, Bradford became the second recipient of the Festival of New Trumpet Music's Award of Recognition.

Bobby Lee Bradford's life begins in Mississippi, he and his family then moved to Dallas, Texas, in 1946. He moved to Los Angeles, California in 1953 where he reunited with Ornette Coleman, whom he had previously known in Texas. Bradford subsequently joined Coleman's ensemble, but was drafted into the U.S. Air Force and replaced by Don Cherry.

After playing in military bands from late 1954 to late 1958, he rejoined Coleman's quartet from 1961 to 1963, which infrequently performed in public, but was indeed recorded under Coleman's Atlantic contract. Quite unfortunately, these tapes were among those many destroyed in the Great Atlantic Vault Fire. Freddie Hubbard acted as Bradford's replacement upon his departure to return to the West Coast and pursue further studies. Bradford soon began a long-running and relatively well-documented association with the clarinetist John Carter, a pairing that brought both increased exposure at international festivals (though the records remain scantily available, when one excludes web rips and bootlegs). Following Carter's death in 1991, Bradford fronted his own ensemble known as The Mo'tet, with which he has continued to perform since. He is the father of drummer Dennis Bradford. He is also the father of jazz vocalist Carmen Bradford.

He holds a B.M. degree from Huston-Tillotson College (now Huston-Tillotson University) in Austin, Texas.

In addition to Coleman, Bradford has performed with Eric Dolphy, Leon "Ndugu" Chancler, Ingebrigt Hker-Flaten, Bob Stewart, Charlie Haden, George Lewis (trmbn.), James Newton, Frode Gjerstad, Vinny Golia, Paal Nilssen-Love, and David Murray, who was previously a student of his in the 1970s.

He is an instructor at Pasadena City College in Pasadena, California, and Pomona College in Claremont, California, where he teaches The History of Jazz, known to be one of the most popular classes available."

-Wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bobby_Bradford)
2/21/2018

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.
"There might not be too many musicians who can claim to have backed up both Steve Lacy and Duran Duran, and surely very few trombonists. Glen Ferris, a native of Los Angeles, got started early as a jazz professional. He has used his city's busy studio scene as a launching platform for a variety of different musical journeys, the styles coming and going in the process. Prototype fusion jazz efforts with Billy Cobham and George Duke were said to have sounded dated in the late '80s, but were considered hip again only a decade later, so it is safe to say that this trombonist will bask in several waves of recognition from his projects over the years.He was a classical student when he began his study of the instrument sometimes insultingly referred to as "a pitch imitator." From 1964 through 1966, he studied theory and composition with Don Ellis, a snorting, trumpet-blasting bandleader who wore Nehru jackets and particularly liked providing audiences with a lengthy, detailed list of the time signature changes that were about to come in the next scheduled tune on the program. One impressive statistic involving numbers is that, at only 16, Ferris was ensconced in the orchestra of said madman, remaining there through 1970. The experience must have been good preparation not only for the sight-reading demands of the studio world, but for the complex demands of later bosses such as Frank Zappa, with whom he worked in 1972, or Harry James, with whose big band he performed in 1973 and 1974. In the second half of the '70s, more of an edge developed in his playing, much of it courtesy of the driving drumming of Cobham, who stuck the trombonist in the front line of various projects between 1974 and 1976. Yet it would still be decades until the trombonist's talents as a bandleader began to emerge.Flesh & StoneMeanwhile, on the Los Angeles front, Ferris was also lucky enough to become involved in musical happenings with trumpeter Bobby Bradford, an inspirational spirit from the acoustic, swinging free jazz side of things. Freelancing in a wide range of classical, soul, pop, and rock live and studio projects, Ferris kept both his wits and a lean melodic edge to his playing that prevented him from ever being disregarded as just another tuneless fusion blaster. In 1977, he took on the ambitious project Celebration, his own ten-piece unit, and also worked in a fine duo setting with Milcho Leviev, the latter music considered to be some of Ferris' best work by jazz purists. He worked with clarinetist Tony Scott in 1981, then did some excellent jazz playing as a member of trumpeter Jack Walrath's group in 1982-1983. The following decade he finally did three solo albums for the Enja label, the series beginning with the excellent Flesh & Stone in 1995. Palatino is an even more recent project, a cooperative quartet that got excellent notices for its live performances. The trombonist is joined in this group by trumpeter Paolo Fresu, Italian jazz veteran Aldo Romano on drums, and bassist Michel Benita.A strange aspect of Ferris' career, which just by nature of its versatility has thrown the more simpler music business bloodhounds off the trail, is the fact that some of the most exciting sounding groups he was in were never recorded. He seems to have had bad luck with Frank Zappa, playing in several ensembles that rehearsed endlessly and then broke up before recording anything, including an early, somewhat gargantuan Hot Rats/Grand Wazoo orchestra. During the most experimental period of the great songwriter Tim Buckley, a cryptic note about the dismal business prospects of his decision to go avant-garde once again includes a mention of Ferris: "Buckley could not record his group (John Balkin on bass, Emmett Chapman on ten-string electric stick, Glen Ferris on trombone, Maury Baker on tympani)." "-Eugene Chadbourne-All Music (https://www.allmusic.com/artist/glenn-ferris-mn0000656998/biography)
2/21/2018

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.

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